Less than four weeks separate us from the ‘Oscars’ of the toy industry, the US Toy of the Year awards 2019.
Excitement is building for this year’s awards which recognises the top toy, game, and licenses in the marketplace, and supports children in need by serving as a critical fundraiser for The Toy Foundation.
Taking place on 15 February at the famous Ziegfeld Ballroom in New York City, the TOTY Awards gala is one of the toy industry’s most anticipated and prestigious events of the year. Toy professionals and industry stakeholders will enjoy an evening of dinner, connecting with friends and colleagues and, of course, finding out who will get to take home a TOTY Award. Following the awards presentation, guests are invited to mix and mingle at a fun-filled afterparty. The TOTY gala kicks off the 116th North American International Toy Fair taking place February 16 to 19 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.
“The TOTY Awards ceremony is a chance for the toy community to celebrate the creativity, passion, hard work, and philanthropy seen across the industry,” says Ken Seiter, The Toy Association’s Executive Vice President of Marketing Communications. “Join us as we kick off Toy Fair week with an enjoyable night of good food, networking, and honoring the great accomplishments of our peers. Be sure to reserve your ticket for an exciting and meaningful celebration. It’s a night you won’t want to miss!”
In mid-November, the 123 TOTY finalists were announced to the public. Consumers, media, and toy industry professionals were then invited to vote for their favorite toys and games by visiting ToyAwards.org. Winners will be announced across 17 categories such as Action Figure of the Year, Innovative Toy of the Year, and Collectible of the Year. One product will win the People’s Choice Award, based solely on consumer votes, and another will win the coveted overall Toy of the Year Award, selected by retailers, journalists, and Toy Association members.
Not forgetting the individuals who make our industry great, the evening will also pay tribute to the newest inductees to the Toy Industry Hall of Fame – the late Stan Lee, former editor-in-chief, publisher, and chairman of Marvel Comics; Brian Goldner, chairman and CEO of Hasbro; and the late Joe Mendelsohn, president of Kenner Products. These individuals were selected for induction by members of The Toy Association in recognition of their significant contributions to the industry and the impact they have had on the lives of children through a lifelong commitment to toys and play. They will join an impressive roster of 76 toy industry luminaries, including Ruth Handler, Jim Henson, George Lucas, and Joan Ganz Cooney, who have been inducted into the Hall since it was established in 1984.
To reserve tickets or tables, interested parties may register online at ToyAssociation.org/TOTY up until 10 February. (For parties of 20-plus, TOTY@toyassociation.org.)